Designing a multiple layer wallpaper

wallpaper preview

I’ve seen a lot of these kinds of wallpapers, in this Gimp tutorial you will learn a simple technique that will enable you to create wallpapers like this one. You will also learn how to use Text along Path.


(Click to enlarge)

bluish wallpaper small

Step 1

Let’s get started, create a new image, background color doesn’t matter, I set the size of mine to 1024×768.

Set your FG color to white, and your BG color to adf1ff.

With the Blend tool, create a gradient in the top right corner of the image. The shape should be set to radial.

creating radial gradient

Step 2

Create a new layer and use the Path tool to draw a shape similar to the one in the image below:


Remember that if you at some point loose your path because you click on a different tool, it’s not lost forever, just doubleclick on it in the Paths Dialog and it’s back.

Step 3

Make sure your FG color is white (ffffff), then stroke the path with a 3px thick line.

stroke path with 3px line

Step 4

Now get the selection from the path. Also, set your FG color to 1ac8f1.

selection from path

Step 5

With the Blend tool, create a gradient across the selection, in this case from the left edge of the selection to the right edge. The shape should be set to linear.

Linear gradient across selection

Get rid of the selection. Select->None. The image should look like this now:

Path filled with gradient

Step 6

Now reduce the opacity of that layer, you should vary the opacity and see what looks best, I set mine to 50.

Gimp layer window reducing opacity

Step 7

Repeat step 2-6 a couple times with different paths and different opacity.

Here are the different paths and opacity levels I used:

Opacity 75

Path 2

Opacity 30

Path 3

Opacity 35

Path 4

Opacity 75

Path 5

Step 8

The text on this one is just holes really, we’re going to create it by deleting parts of a layer, so you must decide which layer you want the text to be on, I chose that last one I made, the one that stretches from the left edge of the image to the right edge.

First, create a path where you want your text to be. If you have a lot of text you must make a long path.

Path were text is going to be

Now select the Text tool, the path will become invisible. Choose a font you like, I chose FreeSans Bold size 70.

Write something, and then click on Text along Path.

Gimp text along path

Step 9

First delete the text layer in the Layer Dialog, then select the layer where you want your text to be.

Next, go to the Paths Dialog, and doubleclick on the top path.

Gimp Paths dialog

This will make the path active and enables us to get the selection from it. So click the Selection fro Path button.

Selection from path

Now hit the delete button on your keyboard so that we create our text “holes”.

There’s a bunch of stuff in the way that keeps us from seeing clearly.
First, get rid of the selection, Select->None.
Second, click on a different tool in the toolbox, like the Pencil tool.
Third, in the Paths Dialog, if the eye is showing, click on it so it goes away.

Path visibility

Now we can see the end result clearly:

bluish wallpaper small

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  1. Muhammad Anas

    August 25th, 2010

    wow … very nice and pretty easy too !!!
    Thank You very much!!!!!!

  2. Captain Heauxbeaux

    April 8th, 2013

    Interesting. 🙂
    BTW, if you put that over a starry background and set the layer to grain extract, it looks AWESOME. Thanks for inspiring my discovery. XD

  3. Captain Heauxbeaux

    April 8th, 2013

    How do you submit tutorials? I’ve submitted an idea, but I have no idea how to actually put it in here. 🙁

  4. web design trends

    May 28th, 2013

    wow, this is really good and easy tutorial, thanks for sharing mate 🙂

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